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  • #16
    I can see the design considerations Mrmdubois mentioned, but I can also see the lore overlap that Satchel pointed out. That is what confuses me a bit, because my first thought was that they can accomplish similar things with manipulating their own specialized ephemera, with conjunctional arcana allowing them to adapt to other ones. So a Mastigos could in theory make a goetic Essence battery, but it would not be able to supply a ghost unless they knew a bit of Death to properly attune it.


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    • #17
      Unlike other fuel traits, all Essence can easily be transferred between two different types of ephemeral entities as long as you have the prerequisite Arcana for those two types of entities. Transforming between other types of fuel traits would require Patterning if it's even possible with non-archmastery.


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      • #18
        Not all essence is memory/emotion though so I fail to see the lore overlap. Angelic essence comes from by sacrifice and infrastructure, Ghost essence comes from memory and anchors, Geotia and Spirit essence comes from Resonance which can include things like Tree and Gun as much as they include things like Anger. The overlap seems to be purely mechanical outside of Spirit and Goetia.
        Last edited by milo v3; 05-25-2019, 07:46 PM.


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        • #19
          Originally posted by milo v3 View Post
          Not all essence is memory/emotion though so I fail to see the lore overlap. Angelic essence comes from by sacrifice and infrastructure, Ghost essence comes from memory and anchors, Geotia and Spirit essence comes from Resonance which can include things like Tree and Gun as much as they include things like Anger. The overlap seems to be purely mechanical outside of Spirit and Goetia.
          The nature of Castoffs and the fact that spirits can derive sustenance from thematically appropriate sacrifices, plus the necessary participants in the angelic refueling process and the fact, should suggest that memory is not to be discounted in the mix, to say nothing of the fact that Anchors are specifically contrasted against the memory-and-emotion-precipitated gains ghosts receive as the product of a buildup.

          Anchors are things with a sympathetic connection to a ghost's life and death. Infrastructure is a phenomenon with a sympathetic connection to angels. Resonance is arguably the purest form of sympathetic connection a spirit or goetia has to its purviews. "The energy of the material world, which accumulates through memory, emotion, and more particular processes which nevertheless have some connection to the conceptual underpinnings of the vessel" is still a shared quality between the fuel sources of ephemeral beings, and the fact that three of them process it in wildly different ways says things about them without those things needing to be "these energies are as disparate as Pyros and Vitae."


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          • #20
            Originally posted by Satchel View Post
            The nature of Castoffs
            Castoffs follow normal ghost rules.

            the fact that spirits can derive sustenance from thematically appropriate sacrifice
            They seem to get it from the resonance, not something being sacrificed in the way Angels get power from destruction of any living creatures and wealth.

            plus the necessary participants in the angelic refueling process and the fact, should suggest that memory is not to be discounted in the mix
            How does participants being involved imply any connection to memory?

            to say nothing of the fact that Anchors are specifically contrasted against the memory-and-emotion-precipitated gains ghosts receive as the product of a buildup.
            I did mention Anchors separate to the memories, yes.

            *Snipped section discussing each essence is tied to sympathy*
            That could be said of fuel stats in general, because otherwise it would be weird for a supernatural to use a fuel-stat that doesn't thematically fit the type of supernatural. How does emotions not have just as much sympathetic connection to the changeling as an emotion goetia for it?

            "The energy of the material world, which accumulates through memory, emotion, and more particular processes which nevertheless have some connection to the conceptual underpinnings of the vessel" is still a shared quality between the fuel sources of ephemeral beings, and the fact that three of them process it in wildly different ways says things about them without those things needing to be "these energies are as disparate as Pyros and Vitae."
            Except for the fact that the anima mundi goetia of canyon doesn't care one second about your memories or emotions. The Angels don't care about the emotion that goes into a sacrifice, the cold alien god doesn't require memories for the sacrifice to be worth anything. The spirit of a wolf doesn't care about your memories. This isn't to say that there are no spirits that care about memories, but essence can definitely have nothing to do with it. That isn't to say there aren't goetia that care about emotions, many do. Some infrastructure does function through siphoning emotion and converting that into essence with aether waste, others might just be a pit in a random basement that devours symbols of wealth.

            It seems far more likely they are a mechanical abstraction in the same way many aspects of ephemerals are abstracted for faster play. Mechanically, essence is essence, because it's not really worth the time giving each a unique name or whatever when such things will probably never come up and being able to use essence in the section for all means they don't need to repeat themselves but with just different terms over and over.
            Last edited by milo v3; 05-26-2019, 12:12 AM.


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            • #21
              Originally posted by milo v3 View Post
              Castoffs follow normal ghost rules.
              Yes. The normal ghost rules of "there was a thing here, and it's gone now." That's no less memory than spending ten minutes cleaning up Great Aunt Catherine's gravesite.

              They seem to get it from the resonance, not something being sacrificed in the way Angels get power from destruction of any living creatures and wealth.
              And you don't imagine there is a connection between these things?

              How does participants being involved imply any connection to memory?
              There was a thing there. It was important. People broke it in the name of the divine. It is not there anymore. The people who broke it know this, because they were there.

              That could be said of fuel stats in general, because otherwise it would be weird for a supernatural to use a fuel-stat that doesn't thematically fit the type of supernatural. How does emotions not have just as much sympathetic connection to the changeling as an emotion goetia for it?
              Glamour exists at right angles to the world Essence deals with. It's from Arcadia and the Hedge and dreams, but only specific unusual circumstances are going to give a changeling Glamour for remaining in a location on their own and taking no action to prompt an upwelling. Not all Glamour is emotion, either, but that doesn't mean emotion and unreality and quid-pro-quo loose change doesn't inform the nature of Glamour or flavor changelings who take it in with its particulars any more than emotion and memory and history and magic and connection to the wider world lack bearing for what Essence is and how it affects ephemeral beings.

              The Essence generated by a baseline Manifestation Condition is the most plainly processed form of sustenance available to ephemeral beings, which is why those Conditions tend to only justify their presence and possibly tilt their focus, but the alternate avenues they have at their disposal say things about them as actors and subjects in the setting they inhabit.

              Except for the fact that the anima mundi goetia of canyon doesn't care one second about your memories or emotions.
              It doesn't have to. People don't have to enter into the equation for memory to matter to a thing that is the dreams of the world with a hazy connection to the place that is the manifest history of the world.

              The Angels don't care about the emotion that goes into a sacrifice, the cold alien god doesn't require memories for the sacrifice to be worth anything.
              Again, "memory" can here here be as simple as the recognition of the loss.

              The spirit of a wolf doesn't care about your memories.
              It doesn't have to. It's a thing from a place that's made of memories. The Shadow is a record of what the world has been. "Your" memories have as much weight as that of the forest or the deer or the grass, if not less.

              It seems far more likely they are a mechanical abstraction in the same way many aspects of ephemerals are abstracted for faster play.
              If this were the case then there would be no reason not to give them different names. Meanwhile, there's multiple instances within the books where it's directly stated or only-barely-implicitly framed that Essence is a consistent phenomenon that just happens to be used differently by different types of being.

              I realize this is one of those things that the books have not done a great job of, but "the movement of Essence is part of a wider-scope phenomenon in the setting" has been text for some time now and it does little good to blot that out, particularly in a game where the interconnected nature of the world and the unintended consequences of meddling with connected parts of it are a pretty big factor in the thematic tilt of its main characters.


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              • #22
                If you want to find common ground for all types of Essence then Satchel has a solid foundation for a fan theory. Angels, however, would require work since there really isn't a connection between sacrifices and resonances or memories, except for entities that draws Essence from the resonance of sacrifice or destruction as a concept which angels shouldn't do because they're not universally agents of sacrifice or destruction.

                The truth is, though, that Essence can be tranfered between different ephemeral entities without needing any major transformation. At most only a translation to change the "flavour" to fit the target entity. That alone proves that Essence is largely the same thing regardless of source or type of entity that uses it. It's similar to the fact that all ephemeral entities are made out of ephemera, even if there are some differences in the different types of ephemera. That's not just a shorthand for entities that use the same rules because other entities that use the same rules (Supernal beings and Quashmallim, for example) are explicitly not ephemeral (even when they use Twilight Form like Quashmallim).


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                • #23
                  Originally posted by Satchel View Post
                  If this were the case then there would be no reason not to give them different names.
                  Wordcount would be a reason.

                  Originally posted by Tessie View Post
                  The truth is, though, that Essence can be tranfered between different ephemeral entities without needing any major transformation. At most only a translation to change the "flavour" to fit the target entity.
                  Ephemeral entities don't even exist on the same frequencies of reality. Spirits don't consume ghost Essence, it literally isn't real to them except in corner cases (Like Mage meddling) and vice versa.
                  Last edited by Mrmdubois; 05-26-2019, 02:52 AM.

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                  • #24
                    .... satchel, that definition of memory is so wide it is completely detached from the meaning of the word. Just having some connection to an event or object or thing != memory, since we're talking about a game where things happen because of causality, Every fuel stat by your definition is powered by memory. Just having people having the capability of detecting a thing to have happened doesn't imply that those memories somehow are mystically being used as part of that fuel anymore than memories are mystically incorporated into how computers send emails in real-life. Just because I can remember typing a message, doesn't mean those memories are going to be part of the essence of that email. It just means I can remember writing and sending the email.

                    Also glamour can be taken from people without having the hedge/dreams/arcadia involved (it definitely infuses those things, on that I'm sure we can agree), but it is born from emotion just like any emotional Resonance conditions.
                    Last edited by milo v3; 05-26-2019, 04:01 AM.


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                    • #25
                      Originally posted by Mrmdubois View Post

                      Wordcount would be a reason.



                      Ephemeral entities don't even exist on the same frequencies of reality. Spirits don't consume ghost Essence, it literally isn't real to them except in corner cases (Like Mage meddling) and vice versa.
                      Mage meddling in this case being quite a good indicator since no Patterning or even Weaving is needed to transform between different types of Essence. You need Ruling to transfer Essence between different types of ephemeral entities, and that might just be for transfer rather than changing the Essence itself. Ghost Essence not being normally tangible for spirits doesn't have to mean anything other than it being in a different form of Twilight, just like ephemeral entities themselves. And as I stated ephemeral entities are made out of the substance ephemera, something that connects all ephemeral entities on a fundamental level. Ephemeral is decidedly not a short term for beings that use the same set of rules (since non-ephemeral entities use the same rules) and I think it makes perfect sense to think of Essence in the same way.

                      Quick edit: Do note that Resonance is the only thing that naturally radiates Essence. Everything else needs to be facilitated in some way (sacrifices) or can only grant Essence to individuals tied to that source (Anchors, memories, Infrastructure).
                      Last edited by Tessie; 05-26-2019, 07:13 AM.


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                      • #26
                        Originally posted by milo v3 View Post
                        .... satchel, that definition of memory is so wide it is completely detached from the meaning of the word.
                        "There was a thing here" is not detached from the meaning of "memory" in a setting where the world itself remembers things and there's an entire cosmological branch of the setting built on that fact.

                        Just having some connection to an event or object or thing != memory, since we're talking about a game where things happen because of causality, Every fuel stat by your definition is powered by memory.
                        It's a long way away to get "this object existed, and the fact that it ceased to materially exist empowered something" to have no connection to memory whatsoever.

                        Just having people having the capability of detecting a thing to have happened doesn't imply that those memories somehow are mystically being used as part of that fuel anymore than memories are mystically incorporated into how computers send emails in real-life.
                        Resources is not an objective value and yet it is used as the basis for determining how much Essence an object's sacrifice grants an angel. The fact that the God-Machine processes Essence like an engine burning fuel doesn't make the place that fuel comes from utterly divorced from the wider framework of the setting.

                        Just because I can remember typing a message, doesn't mean those memories are going to be part of the essence of that email. It just means I can remember writing and sending the email.
                        And if that message is important, the qualities it imparts to a spirit that consumes it will matter and will be conveyed, as far as spirits are concerned, through its Essence.

                        Also glamour can be taken from people without having the hedge/dreams/arcadia involved (it definitely infuses those things, on that I'm sure we can agree), but it is born from emotion just like any emotional Resonance conditions.
                        I am reminding you that both Glamour and Essence can be produced without any direct involvement of emotional resonance and that lack of involvement doesn't change the nature of either resource as "a mystical energy that is produced by, among other things, emotions."


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                        • #27
                          Originally posted by Satchel View Post
                          "There was a thing here" is not detached from the meaning of "memory" in a setting where the world itself remembers things and there's an entire cosmological branch of the setting built on that fact.
                          I'd say it is when memory isn't actually required for that cosmological branch your mentioning. It seems like you're using the term memory to a degree much broader than the actual word memory. When someone stands in front of a light, it casts a shadow, but that shadow is not a memory. i

                          It's a long way away to get "this object existed, and the fact that it ceased to materially exist empowered something" to have no connection to memory whatsoever.
                          Ah, just as eating a sandwich is a memory thing because something existed at some point and then it ceased to exist empowering the person who consumes it.

                          Resources is not an objective value and yet it is used as the basis for determining how much Essence an object's sacrifice grants an angel.
                          Yes?

                          The fact that the God-Machine processes Essence like an engine burning fuel doesn't make the place that fuel comes from utterly divorced from the wider framework of the setting.
                          Except it's a framework you are headcanoning...

                          And if that message is important, the qualities it imparts to a spirit that consumes it will matter and will be conveyed, as far as spirits are concerned, through its Essence.
                          That's not memory. That is stuff that matters During the instance the email is being created and sent, not after.

                          I am reminding you that both Glamour and Essence can be produced without any direct involvement of emotional resonance and that lack of involvement doesn't change the nature of either resource as "a mystical energy that is produced by, among other things, emotions."
                          .... yes, sort of (glamour is literally born out of emotion so I'd struggle to think of a time when it would be created without emotional resonance)... my point is that applies to many fuel stats so it doesn't make a very good argument for saying all essence is the same for falling into that category. Some forms of essence, glamour, pyros, plasm, satiety (though I can see the argument that it'd be fair to ignore satiety as it's mechanical structure is very different to other fuel stats being a fuel-stat/integrity hybrid) are all mystical energies that are produced by, among other things, emotions.
                          Last edited by milo v3; 05-28-2019, 09:57 AM.


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                          • #28
                            Originally posted by milo v3 View Post
                            I'd say it is when memory isn't actually required for that cosmological branch your mentioning. It seems like you're using the term memory to a degree much broader than the actual word memory. When someone stands in front of a light, it casts a shadow, but that shadow is not a memory.
                            "You can find buildings and forests in the Shadow that no longer exist in the material world," "most of the time, artificial spirits only awaken to become active entities when their material antecedent is destroyed," and "the scale of the Shadow is affected by the perspectives of animals and other nonhumans as much as it is by people" are all things that the books have established. I am using the actual word memory to mean the same type of thing as when we say that a person's journal contains their memories.

                            Ah, just as eating a sandwich is a memory thing because something existed at some point and then it ceased to exist empowering the person who consumes it.
                            When people and sandwiches are magical beings who specifically deal with the conceptual energies of the universe as fuel and currency, this will be a solid point.

                            Until then, "the uncaring Demiurge and its agents burn the primary supernatural energy of the universe in a way that warps the world around it, acquire that energy through a combination of directed sacrifice by cultists and the complex manipulations of reality that make up the mind and body of the Machine, and aren't too fussed about what happens in the process of getting it as long as the output arrives" means that even though the Aether-producing chunk of the ephemeral being mechanics doesn't truck with the conceptual-conveyance quality of Essence as much as the Shadow does (it's too denatured/hyper-blended for that), "the God-Machine runs on Essence" says something about the setting that wouldn't be said if Aether was a thing that Just Happened.

                            Except it's a framework you are headcanoning...
                            Again: The textual ways that spirits and the Shadow work are not something I made up.

                            That's not memory. That is stuff that matters During the instance the email is being created and sent, not after.
                            Journaling. See above.

                            .... yes, sort of (glamour is literally born out of emotion so I'd struggle to think of a time when it would be created without emotional resonance)
                            Goblin fruit and other Hedge bounty. Literally the primary means by which a changeling can survive in the Hedge without contact with things that aren't (explicitly non-harvestable) fae beings.

                            ... my point is that applies to many fuel stats so it doesn't make a very good argument for saying all essence is the same for falling into that category.
                            And Essence distinguishes itself from the others by being widespread to the point of nigh-omnipresence, naturally forming self-sustaining feedback loops in sufficient quantities, and otherwise being the energy directly formed by Resonance of all types. "Memory and emotion" is as good a shorthand as any for where a fuel that contains the nature of concepts and is most abundant in the psychic realm of pure ideas and the dreams of the world comes from.
                            Last edited by Satchel; 05-28-2019, 10:53 AM.


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                            • #29
                              Well, on the subject of "what is Essence", I personally treat it as the basic "energy of existence". Whatever the type of Essence it may be, and what kind of ephemeral entity feeds upon it, it always relates to the entity reinforcing its existence in order to gain Essence- ghosts gain Essence by being remembered, angels by having sacrifices made by their (and their god's) name, spirits gorge upon objects which resonate with what they symbolize. They can even reinforce their existence upon others by stealing their Essence. I've written once a long, in depth argument about the subject, but the way I see it- it is in the name. It is the literal "Essence" of the phenomena related to the ephemeral in question.


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                              • #30
                                I think different types of essence are just different frequencies.

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